Beartooth Highway Closed – Weather Update

4/17/14 – 9:28 am

High elevations of the Beartooth Highway – including Beartooth Pass – are currently closed due to snow, slush, and blowing snow on the roadway.  MTDOT and Yellowstone National Park road crews have assessed the situation and the decission has been made to continue the current road closure through today, 6/17/14.  Highway crews will re-assess road conditions tomorrow, ( 6/18/14 ) and a decision will be made at that time regarding a re-opening schedule.  Travelers can currently travel along the Beartooth Highway from Red Lodge, MT to Vista Point, and then back track to Red Lodge, and can travel as far as Long Lake in Wyoming before turning around.  The Chief Joseph Scenic Byway ( WY 296 ) is open and can be used as an alternate travel route to travel into and out of Cooke City, MT and the Northeast Entrance to Yellowstone National Park.  Current up-to-date travel information can be obtained from local area Chambers of Commerce:

Red Lodge Area Chamber of Commerce – 406-446-1718
Cooke City Chamber of Commerce – 406-838-2495
Cody Country Chamber of Commerce – 307-587-2777
Montana DOT – 406-252-4138 / 888-863-8465

6/17/14 – 7:00 am

An early summer storm is currently moving through the area (6/17/14 )  High elevations of the Beartooth Highway including Beartooth Pass are currently closed due to blowing and drifting snow.  Plowing crews are on the road and making every effort to re-open the Highway as quickly as possible. 


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Did You Know?


Beartooth Highway Wyoming & Montana

Whirlpools often form when water rushes through a rough channel.  Water glancing off rocks starts spinning as it is hit by other water rushing by.  Any material caught up in the whirlpool will spin with the water.  In time, spinning sand, pebbles and grave may carve potholes, like the ones seen in the rocks above the bridge.  During the construction of Lake Creek bridge, boulders were removed from the creek’s bed the water channel was changed exposing the potholes.  Watch for them when you visit Lake Creek Falls.

Clay Butte Lookout - Beartooth Highway

The Clay Butte Lookout was built in 1942 by the Civilian Conservation Corps and was used as a fire lookout. It was staffed until the 1960s, when aircraft proved a better tool for fire detection. Today, because of its popular scenic vantage point and proximity to the Beartooth Highway, Clay Butte is used as a visitor information site. It was remodeled in 1962 and has been staffed since 1975 by volunteers. The focus of Clay Butte today is to give visitors a glimpse of how fire lookouts functioned 60 years ago. Sightseers driving the scenic byway stop to obtain information or take in the view, which includes wildlife, botanical areas, the effects of the Clover-Mist wildfire of 1988, and the geology of ancient seas that once covered the Beartooth Plateau.